Sunday, April 18th, 2021

Shopper Client Stories


CHESAPEAKE PEST CONTROL

Giving to clients and community

by Cristi Sanchez


George Spence and Adam Wallace backed by the staff and fleet of Chesapeake Pest Control

George Spence and Adam Wallace backed by the staff and fleet of Chesapeake Pest Control

George Spence, one of the owners of Chesapeake Pest Control, grew up in rural southern Chesapeake in a tight-knit family so large it almost created its own community. His grandfather, Billy Culpeper, owned Culpeper Farms. The family still lives there to this day, including George and his wife, who just purchased and renovated his great-grandfather's historic home on Buskey Road.
George's career in pest control began a few years out of high school through connections from a workplace friendship. Employed at a local restaurant chain, George became good friends with then-boss Adam Wallace, whose father, Tony, owned Pest Guard. It was an employment proposal from Adam's dad in 2005 that set George's career trajectory. 

"Adam's dad needed people, and he asked us if we'd like to come to work for him.  After working 60 to 70 hours a week and weekends in the restaurant, a nine-to-five, Monday-through-Friday job, with the use of a company vehicle, was a no-brainer!" George laughs. "So, we left the restaurant to work for his dad."

While Adam later pursued other opportunities, George stayed with the company for ten years, learning all he could about the pest control business. "Tony was an amazing boss and mentor," George recalls with a smile. "I learned everything I know from him during my time there." 

Family soon became the catalyst for the birth of George's business. "Sarah was pregnant with our first baby, and really wanted the opportunity to leave work to be at home with our child," George explains. "I wanted that for her but wasn't sure how we'd swing that financially. So, I decided to find a way to make it happen."

George immediately began brainstorming ways to "find more money." He decided to pursue freelance pest control jobs.  Realizing he had numerous personal contacts from having lived and worked in Chesapeake his entire life, George started reaching out to people. He landed crawl space work every weekend. "That quickly snowballed to where I didn't have time to do all the side work I was getting!" George smiles.

In a serendipitous turn, Adam had become a contractor organizing crews to flip houses for investors. So George reached out to his old friend. "When I asked Adam if he could pick up the work I was selling, he jumped on it," George continues. "We worked out an agreement: he handled organizing crews and getting the work done, and I sold the jobs."

With his side business booming, George eventually realized he needed to focus his time and energy on the full-time business he had inadvertently created.  So leaving Pest Guard on good terms, George started Chesapeake Pest Control in 2015, bringing Adam on board as a full-time business partner.


Chesapeake Pest Control supports numerous area charities. Above are George Spence and Adam Wallace with a transit truck full of Toys for Tots donations.

Chesapeake Pest Control supports numerous area charities. Above are George Spence and Adam Wallace with a transit truck full of Toys for Tots donations.


"We really want
to give back to the community
that has given us so much
and contributed to our success
by trusting us with their homes."
- George Spence


Chesapeake Pest was immediately set up for growth when Tony offered to let George and Adam purchase the list of his Pest Guard clients. "Because of that opportunity, we've gone from two trucks and two employees to a fleet of seven trucks and an expanded crew in only five years," George says with pride.

Chesapeake Pest Control's growth isn't just due to the expanded customer list, however. George credits superior service as the most significant reason for the company's success, as reflected by their five-star reviews on Google and Facebook.

"Our mission statement is "establishing higher-level expectations for pest and moisture control.' We do that by offering superior service, making sure that everything is done correctly, and by being readily available to our clients,"  George emphasizes. "We're small and locally-owned. We don't rely on large marketing campaigns. We rely on word of mouth recommendations, so our work has to be quality. Our image is everything to us."

A cornerstone of Chesapeake Pest's superior service is honesty that instills trust with the clients.  "We want customers comfortable trusting us with their homes.  We're not a commissioned-based business.  Our crew gets hourly wages, so customers can be confident that we don't recommend unnecessary work so our people can get paid.  We always deal honestly with our customers.  If there's moisture or termite damage, we'll tell you, but if there's nothing wrong, we tell you that, too," George stresses.

Doing right doesn't stop with customers. As membership chairman of the Chesapeake Kiwanis Club, George also does right by the community.  Giving back is of the utmost importance. His and Adam's giving comes from a place of understanding. "Growing up, my family wasn't as fortunate as we are now,'" George exclaims.  "I know what it's like to be in that place, so for me to be where I am now and have the opportunity to help, I do it every chance I get."

Chesapeake Pest's community giving started with one shopping cart of toys donated to Toys for Tots and continues to grow. "It was really satisfying. The next year, Adam and I decided to try to fill a whole truck," George remembers. After much thought throughout the year, they created Chesapeake Pest Control's Fill the Transit' program, partnering with Church at Hampton Roads for their adopted Harbor North neighborhood.  

In three years, the program grew from filling one transit truck to a full-blown neighborhood event, with tents in the neighborhood courtyard where toys are sorted on tables by age groups. Parents come the Saturday before Christmas and pick out toys for their children at no cost. Even Santa was on hand last year for children to visit while parents shopped.

"This year, we began taking monetary donations to buy toys and were able to fill a whole trailer instead of a transit truck," George says happily. "We were even approached by bigger companies who wanted to make large donations, but didn't because we weren't a 501c3 charity."

Never one to be deterred, George immediately worked to remedy the situation and grow their charitable capacity. "We applied and created Chesapeake Helping Hands, which is Chesapeake Pest Control's official 501c3 non-profit.  Now we have the opportunity to increase our outreach and meet other needs in the community as we see them," George smiles. "We really want to give back to the community that has given us so much and contributed to our success by trusting us with their homes."

Giving to clients and the community:  For George Spence, that is the Chesapeake Pest Control way.




Chesapeake Pest Control

119 Tilden Ave Suite B
Chesapeake, VA 23322

757-317-1212
www.chesapeakepest.com